Asus RT-AX55 AX1800 Wifi-6 Router vs Netgear vs Archer

One of most popular network segments on wifi-6 that gets a large market segment is ax1800 which is similar to ac1200 on wifi-5 (wireless ac). Almost all vendors introduce their products in this ax1800 network segment either wifi-6 router or mesh wifi, not even just one model but two or three ax1800 router models including Netgear, Linksys and TP-link.

Asus ax1800

Asus released two models of ax1800 router, Asus rt-ax56u and Asus rt-ax55. Both are simultaneous dual band wifi-6 routers that technically work on the ax1800 network segment. See also other Asus ax1800 with mesh technology – the Asus xd4 mini ax1800 mesh wifi.  

Asus rt-ax55 vs rt-ax56u

What is the difference between these two Asus ax1800 router series? Technically there is not much difference except for couple of physical differences such as antennas and port interfaces.

Physical interfaces

With 2×2 data streams each band; rt-ax55 comes with 4x external antennas, while Asus rt-ax56u only comes with two dual band external antennas.

Asus rt-ax55 ax1800
Asus rt-ax55 ax1800

Unlike rt-ax56u that comes with two USB ports for share hard disk storage, ax55 doesn’t come with any USB port. While not many people take advantage of the existence of a USB port on a wifi router, except storing their data using local hard disk storage for computers.

WPA3

There is additional feature in the new rt-ax55 series in terms of wifi security encryption that this product supports the latest WPA3 wifi security encryption but Asus rt-ax56u series doesn’t. The other features are the same, take a look at the following table 1 that shows spec differences between the series.

Table 1. Asus rt-ax55 vs ax56u

Asus seriesAsus rt-ax55Asus rt-ax56u
Antennas4x external antennas2x external antennas
USB PortsN/A1x USB 2.0 1x USB 3.1 Gen 1
ProcessorQuad core 1.5GHz processor with 128MB Flash and 256 MB RAMQuad core 1.5GHz processor with 256MB Flash and  512MB RAM
Wifi encryption WPA3-personal, WPA2-personal / enterpriseWPA2-PSK, WPA2-enterprise
Price$129.99$147.99

AiMesh

Like other recent Asus wifi router series in general that support Aimesh technology, this product also supports Aimesh which allows the rt-ax55 to join other compatible Aimesh routers to create whole home mesh wifi. Lots of latest Asus products are compatible with Asus Aimesh technology such as Asus rt-ax3000 router; the higher level model Asus rt-ax82u and Asus rt-ax86u ax5700 router and still more.

Asus ax1800 vs Netgear vs Archer

Asus rt-ax55 is tagged with higher price than competing products that work at the same ax1800 network segment. We’ll compare this product with Netgear rax10 (aka Netgear R6700ax) and TP-link Archer ax21 or Archer ax20 that also work at the same ax1800 network segment.

Take a look at the following two spec comparison table 2 and table 3 below, see that there is not much spec differences among the three products.

Netgear rax20 (R6700ax) ax1800
Netgear rax20 (R6700ax) ax1800

USB port

Most of wifi routers that work at ax1500 and ax1800 network segments do not come with USB ports, but almost all of them come with 1x Gigabit Wan port and 4x Gigabit LAN ports. Asus rt-ax55 and Netgear r6700ax are not equipped with USB port, but TP-link Archer ax21 is equipped with one USB port to share had disk storage or Apple time machine for Mac.

Network protection

All the three products support the latest wifi security encryption WPA3, either WPA3-personal or WPA2/WPA3. The good thing with Asus is that it comes with lifetime free AiProtection classic powered by Trend micro that helps your connected devices against any internet threats. Compare with Netgear that comes with Netgear Armor cyber security that you need to subscribe annually.  

Table 2 Asus rt-ax55 vs Netgear

ModelAsus rt-ax55Netgear Rax10  , R6700ax
Wifi technologySimultaneous dual band ax1800 with OFDMA, beamforming and 1024-qam with Asus Aimesh supportSimultaneous dual band ax1800 with OFDMA, and 1024-qam; 4-streams
 Wifi speeds574Mbps @2.4GHz 1,201Mbps @5GHz600Mbps @2.4GHz 1,200Mbps @5GHz
Antennas4x external antennas3x external antennas
Ethernet Ports1x Gigabit WAN 4xGigabit LAN1x Gigabit WAN 4xGigabit LAN
USB PortsN/AN/A
Processor Quad core 1.5GHz processor with 128MB Flash and 256 MB RAMQuad-core 1.5GHz processor
Securitylifetime free AiProtection Classic, powered by Trend Micro WPA3-personal, WPA2-personal / enterpriseNetgear Armor cyber security plan Guest network, auto firmware update Supports WPA2/WPA3
OthersAimesh to create whole home with other Asus Aimesh routersVPN, Guest WiFi Secure Access, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant Voice Control
Price$129.99$99.99

All other spec and features are almost the same including the processor embedded on each board even though different memory capacity.  However RAM and Flash memory mater.

Pay attention to Asus which is embedded with a quad core processor and is equipped with 128MB Flash memory and 256MB RAM. You can compare it with the memory installed on the eero 6 ax1800 mesh wifi router which is equipped with 512MB RAM and 4GB Flash memory, very large memory capacity installed on eero 6 products.

TP-link Archer ax1800
TP-link Archer ax1800

Table 3 Asus rt-ax55 vs Archer

ModelAsus rt-ax55Archer ax21
Wifi technologySimultaneous dual band ax1800 with OFDMA, beamforming and 1024-qam with Asus Aimesh supportSimultaneous dual band ax1800 with OFDMA, beamforming and 1024-qam
Wifi speeds574Mbps @2.4GHz 1,201Mbps @5GHz574Mbps @2.4GHz 1,201Mbps @5GHz
Antennas4x external antennas4x external antennas
Ethernet Ports1x Gigabit WAN 4xGigabit LAN1x Gigabit WAN 4xGigabit LAN
USB PortsN/A1x USB 2.0 port  for Apple time machine, FTP server, media server
Processor Quad core 1.5GHz processor with 128MB Flash and 256 MB RAMQuad core 1.5GHz processor
Securitylifetime free AiProtection Classic, powered by Trend Micro WPA3-personal, WPA2-personal / enterpriseGuest network / band Auto FW update WPA/ WPA2/ WPA3 WPA/WPA2-Enterprise (802.1x)
OthersAimesh to create whole home with other Asus Aimesh routersQoS by device Wireless router / AP modes
Price$129.99$99.99

Both Netgear rax10 (aka Netgear r6700ax) and TP-link Archer ax21 are tagged with the same price around $100 in Amazon, around $30 cheaper than Asus rt-ax55. Click the link below to shop each of the products in Amazon (#ads).  

Related products

For high bandwidth ax11000 wifi-6 gaming router, consider this Archer ax11000 wireless gaming router and see the comparison with Asus and Arris Surfboard ax11000.

To support your business / enterprise wifi network you may consider business class wifi-6 access point – see Ubiquiti Unifi 6 access point and new Omada eap660 ax3300 wifi-6 AP and Omada eap265 HD series ac1750 access point.  

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